Monday, 24 March 2014

March 23rd

The day started off with a howling north westerly wind, sub-zero wind chill temperatures and not a migrant in sight. However, as the day progressed, the wind died down, and a handful of migrants appeared on the island. The first Common Crossbill of the year was seen in the New Plantation in the early hours- a fine male dropping down from the pines to catch a quick drink. A Black Redstart was discovered amongst the Abbey ruins, and a male Northern Wheatear spent the afternoon singing on the sheltered slopes of the East Side. A total of three Chiffchaffs and eights Goldcrests were also recorded, whilst 148 Meadow Pipits were scattered over the island
in loose flocks.

This very smart Black Redstart spent the day feeding in the shelter of the ruined Abbey at Nant. This is only the third Black Redstart so far this year, and we still await our first spring male
The only Northern Wheatear of the day was found, or rather, heard singing on the east side of Pen Cristin in the afternoon

March 24th

After a night of very light northerly winds, a gale force south easterly wind picked up in the early hours, and forced a small selection of migrants to make landfall on the island. A total of 10 Wheatears were scattered about the coast, trying to find shelter from the wind; the Black Redstart was again seen near Nant; and eight Chiffchaffs were found sheltering in the island's gardens and withies. A small movement of Meadow Pipits in the morning saw at least 185 Meadow Pipits arriving on the island, along with 14 Pied Wagtails, three Starlings and three Chaffinches..

 There are currently one or two small flocks of Linnets frequenting the arable fields on the island
 The Hooded Crow has now been on the island for over four months, first settling around Solfach in late November 2013. This is the first overwintering Hooded Crow on Bardsey for a rather long time!
It was a day for keeping you head down, and facing into the wind! Whether you are a Carrion Crow or a Wheatear...

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